Obama staffer resigns

From The Guardian
by Ewen Macaskill and Suzanne Goldenberg, Washington

ONE of Barack Obama's senior advisers, Samantha Power, was forced to resign yesterday after describing Hillary Clinton as a monster — one of the most personal comments yet in what is becoming an increasingly negative campaign.

Ms Power, who was in Britain promoting a book at the time, told The Scotsman newspaper: "We f---ed up in Ohio. In Ohio, they are obsessed and Hillary is going to town on it because she knows Ohio's the only place they can win. She is a monster, too — that is off the record. She is stooping to anything."

The Clinton camp immediately demanded Senator Obama sack Ms Power, a Harvard professor and foreign affairs specialist. It produced four members of Congress to denounce her comments and reminded Senator Obama of his promise in December to sack staff who engaged in such personal attacks.

Ms Power issued a statement saying: "With deep regret, I am resigning from my role as an adviser to the Obama campaign effective today.

"Last Monday, I made inexcusable remarks that are at marked variance from my oft-stated admiration for Senator Clinton and from the spirit, tenor, and purpose of the Obama campaign.

"And I extend my deepest apologies to Senator Clinton, Senator Obama, and the remarkable team I have worked with over these long 14 months."

Senator Obama's spokesman said the remarks were not in keeping with the senator's views. "Senator Obama decries such characterisations, which have no place in this campaign," the spokesman said.

Ms Power, a specialist on humanitarian issues, the United Nations and the Balkans, is one of many foreign policy advisers to the Obama team.

Her comment came as relations between the two camps have become increasingly fractious. Senator Obama's team blames the loss of the Ohio and Texas primaries last week on negative campaigning by Senator Clinton.